Monday, August 20, 2012

Write FIRST


We're just two weeks into the new school year and I'm already exhausted. I've been fighting my first "bug" of the season - congestion, cough, aches, and fatigue - and I had to check Rock Star out of school this morning because he was feeling unwell, too. And judging by the way the dog keeps scratching himself, I'm pretty sure he has an ear infection. Guess I need to call the vet.

Meanwhile, Middle Child is getting ready to leave for a several-week trip to Europe tomorrow. Europe! Has it really been thirty years since I visited myself? Anyway, tomorrow, after my doctor's appointment - just a routine physical, no big deal - I will drive him and his travel companion to the airport. It will be all I can do not to cry when I say goodbye. How will I survive his being so far away for such a long time?

Also, since Middle Child offered to let his younger brother drive his car while he is away, this afternoon I made the phone call to add newly-licensed Rock Star to my insurance company - gulp! At least I don't have to worry about where to invest all my surplus funds, ha!

Most disconcerting of all, Mr. Nice Guy, the fellow I have been seeing the past few weeks had major surgery today, very serious business. I was on pins and needles for hours awaiting word. I won't go into all the details for the sake of his privacy. but according to the text I received from his daughter this afternoon, he is in recovery and doing well. Big sigh of relief there.

I celebrated my 53rd birthday last Wednesday. My three children joined me for dinner at a local Italian restaurant; it was the first time we have all shared a meal together in ages. It was a wonderful gift. I am also enjoying the cool clock my mom sent me. It is featured in the photo at the top of this blog post; click HERE if you want to order one of your very own. The Thoreau quote below it was already on my wall; it has been my motto, of sorts. But after a day like today, I feel discouraged. I didn't make so much as a millimeter's progress in the direction of my dreams. The sad thing is I cannot even tell you where the hours went. When I woke up this morning, I thought I would be able to squeeze at least a couple of hours of writing; the truth is I haven't added a word to my novel since Thursday. Thursday! This is simply not acceptable.

So I am adopting a new motto. Write FIRST. Before I scribble my morning pages. Before I check email or send a tweet or log into Facebook. Before running or beading or playing the piano. I'm going to get up at 6, take the dog out, pour myself a cup of coffee (programmed to brew the night before) and spend the first two hours of the day working on my novel. Not a blog post or a book review or a letter to the editor. The rest of the day will be mine to spend as duty allows and my heart desires.

Yes, I have a busy life and many responsibilities. But the essential things will get done. They always do. Meanwhile, I will be going confidently in the direction of my dreams. As long as I write FIRST.

13 comments:

B Snow said...

I keep meaning to write first, and yet somehow not managing it. Let us know how you do, and if there's some secret to it!

S.M. Carrière said...

That's a brilliant idea. I also have a trick for keeping motivated - don't beat yourself up if you miss a goal!

Pam Asberry said...

I don't have any secrets, B. All I know is my "old way" wasn't working, so I decided to try something radically different. And even though I couldn't fall asleep last night and got a late start this morning, I grabbed a cup of coffee and my laptop and started writing without giving myself an opportunity to do anything else. And it WORKED! I added 1038 words to my manuscript. Now I have to get ready for a doctor's appointment; then I have to take my son and his friend to the airport; and after that I have piano students from 3-8:15. But if I don't accomplish another thing, at least I have the satisfaction of knowing I am 1038 words closer to making my dreams come true. And I am going to hold onto that!

Pam Asberry said...

You are absolutely right, S.M. There will be days when I will fall short, despite my best intentions. But I intend to write FIRST, even if I don't have two hours to do it. Even 100 words will move me in the right direction. I've just got to keep reminding myself.

Anonymous said...

Good luck with "Mr Nice Guy".

Write with your heat...write often.

Affection is responsible for nine-tenths of whatever solid and durable happiness there is in our lives.

- C.S. Lewis

Anonymous said...

"heart"

Sorry.

Pam Asberry said...

I knew what you meant, Anonymous. Thank you so much for your comments. I love the C.S. Lewis quote!

Carol Kilgore said...

Yes. This works for me, too.

Pam Asberry said...

That is encouraging, Carol. Thanks for your comment!

Denise Stewart said...

It's the only thing that has worked for me.

Bryonna Nobles said...

THANK YOU for sending the clock link. I want one soooo badly. Happy birthday btw.

Oh, and if your dog has an ear infection, my Momo gets them all the time. Just wash his ears with diluted white vinegar. It stings but does the trick. That way you don't have to loose money on a vet trip that will give you something that does the same thing.

Pam Asberry said...

So far, so good for me too, Denise! :-)

Pam Asberry said...

I love my clock, Bryonna! Thanks for the birthday wishes! :-) A Facebook friend posted that same info about the vinegar ear wash on my wall this morning, too. It's definitely worth a try!